Legalizing Weed in San Francisco: A Love Story

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San Francisco is widely acknowledged as a hub for counterculture movements in the United States. The 1960’s brought the Summer of Love and the Hippy Movement into the national spotlight and although many of these individuals advocated for cannabis reform, little did they know that their work would pave the way for cannabis legalization decades later.

In 1964, the first cannabis legalization group was formed in the U.S. when Lowell Eggemeier of San Francisco was arrested on cannabis charges. His attorney established LEMAR (LEgalize MARijuana) shortly afterwards.

1972 saw the rise and fall of Proposition 19, which attempted to decriminalize the possession and sale of cannabis. Though it failed at the time, the passing of the Moscone Act of 1975 reduced possession of one ounce of marijuana from a felony to a misdemeanor. 

The 1980s saw the onset of the AIDS epidemic. This epidemic severly impacted the gay community in San Francisco. Individuals suffering from the virus were often completely debilitated by the symptoms associated with the virus and the various medications being used to treat the illness. At this time, sick San Franciscans strived to find medical care and treatments, but suffered the menacing effects of socialized stigma. This ultimately led to the beginning of compassionate cannabis care in California. People suffering from AIDS found that using cannabis significantly reduced their symptoms and allowed them to live more comfortably.

Vietnam veteran Dennis Peron was personally impacted by AIDS, losing his partner in 1990 to the virus. Peron led the crusade in passing Proposition P, a measure that legalized the medical use of marijuana within San Francisco city limits. A mission that was planned and put into action at Flore Cafe, down the road from Flore Dispensary. He later opened the first public dispensary in the United States, The San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club.

Around the same time, the founder of Flore Dispensary, Terrance Allen was passionate about supporting his LGBTQ+ community, especially those suffering from AIDS and worked to provide compassionate cannabis to those in need. Terrance helped by providing cannabis to patients and subsequently, these individuals experienced improved appetite, managed their pain, reduced their nausea, anxiety, and depression.

When Prop 215 was successfully passed in 1996, Terrance started a medical cannabis business known as CHAMP – Californians Helping To Alleviate Medical Problems. CHAMP became very popular for winning a 4-year court case against the tax board, which resulted in the making of medical cannabis non-taxable.

Ten years later, PROP 64 was passed in California and recreational cannabis was legalized. Terrance built Flore Dispensary in The Castro District, focusing on his compassionate care program, but also providing the community with top-quality cannabis from legacy farms based out of Humboldt County. 

Terrance has served on the San Francisco Cannabis State Legalization Task Force, educating San Francisco officials as they laid out laws regarding Prop 64. To date, he remains a board member of the Castro Merchants (a non-profit association) to ensure that the Castro District remains vibrant and successful.

If you’re in San Francisco about to search for a “dispensary near me”. Head to Flore Dispensary, they’ve got you covered. Flore takes pride in offering a top-notch customer experience. Guests will be guided by kind and knowledgeable staff, regardless of their prior experience using cannabis. If you’re looking to shop at a mission-driven dispensary that’s centrally located in the Castro, look no further than Flore Dispensary. Their mission extends beyond offering the best cannabis in Northern California. They’ve committed to serving the larger San Francisco community through compassionate care, and they’ve partnered with farmers who practice regenerative farming techniques. Flore Dispensary is for the people and the planet.

Terrance Alan
Terrance Alan

Terrance Alan has over 25 years in government advocacy creating both the San Francisco entertainment commission and the cannabis taskforce. He is co-president of the Castro merchant’s and co-chair of CMAC and C2K, both working on cannabis consumption. He designed, constructed and opened a boutique dispensary in the Castro District of San Francisco called Flore dispensary featuring carefully curated cannabis selections with an emphasis on small Humboldt far grown cannabis, social justice brands, equity brands, women owned brands and operates a compassion distribution program with Sweetleaf Joe.

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